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THX certified VR audio could be on the horizon following Razer deal

Razer buys THX

Razer's purchase of THX won't spur any immediate changes in either company, though it will open the door for a Razer push into the broader entertainment market and the potential for THX certified sound in virtual reality, Min-Liang Tan, Razer co-founder and CEO, told Polygon.

"We did the acquisition for three main reasons," Tan said. "They have a phenomenal brand, similar to Razer, THX has quite a bit of a cult following.

"We're really excited about the depth of IP they have accrued over the past 30 years. We see an opportunity to apply that in new areas, to look at things like VR, streaming and so on and so forth.

"They have some of the best audio scientists, designers and engineers in the world. We felt this is a phenomenal opportunity to work with this true talent."

Last night, Razer announced that it had acquired the majority of the assets of THX and that the company will operate as an independent startup apart from its Razer parent company.

Tan said that Razer is bringing on the entire team, keeping them completely independent in their own offices with their own strategy and direction. He said no one was let go in the transition. He declined to say if it was a cash purchase or how much the company sold for.

THX, perhaps best known for its "deep note" which proceeds movies played in THX certified theaters, was founded by George Lucas in 1983, creating an audio/visual standard for movie theaters, screening rooms and computer screens. The company was spun off from Lucasfilm Ltd. in 2002 with Creative Technology owning about 60 percent of the company. The company went independent in 2012.

Razer last worked with THX about eight years ago while working on its Mako speakers, Tan said. With the acquisition, Razer plans to double down on its audio work in gaming, including in virtual reality. Tan added that while THX has been looking into the VR space, there isn't anything concrete yet to announce.

"Some people may find this deal surprising, some will think it makes absolute sense," Tan said. "THX is in a unique position and we’re both focused on providing the best premium experience.

"We're really excited about what THX can bring to gamers and what Razer can bring to the entertainment industry as a whole."